Porthcawl caravan park to reopen after lying ‘derelict for more than a decade’

A famous Porthcawl caravan site will welcome visitors for the first time in more than a decade next week.

Sandy Bay Touring Site will reopen for business on Monday on land close to the Hi Tide Inn.

The former site – a mainstay of the seaside town’s tourism industry – was controversially closed by the council in 2000, in part to free up the prime seafront site for Porthcawl’s regeneration scheme.

But the seafront dune expanse remained unused for 12 years, with Hi Tide Inn director Geoff Dower branding it “derelict for a decade”.

Calls to reopen the site have persisted for more than a decade, with residents and campaigners arguing the lack of overnight stopover facilities for camper vans has led to a clogging up of the seafront with overnight parkers.

But Mr Dower and wife Fran, who have put £30,000 towards developing the new camper van site and will fund the project, said the facility should ease the seafront parking problems.

“This is great news for Porthcawl, enabling a designated site for mobile homes to vacate the promenade,” Mr Dower said.

The site, which will be accessed via the Hi Tide Inn car park through an automated barrier in the far wall, includes basic washing and toilet facilities and means to dispose of mobile homes’ chemical toilets.

It will open on an initial six month trial basis, which has been negotiated with Bridgend County Borough Council.

Porthcawl town councillor for the East Central ward, Mark Davies, said: “This should see an end to the issues the town has had in recent years with camper vans abusing Porthcawl’s residential streets.

“All in all, this is another step in the right direction.”

Mrs Dower said the 40-vehicle site may also help revive shopping on New Road.

BCBC deputy leader, councillor David Sage, said: “While the overall Sandy Bay site still figures prominently in our plans for the ongoing regeneration of Porthcawl, we have agreed a proposal for using part of it on a temporary basis to provide a dedicated place which can be used by touring caravans.”

He added BCBC would look again at providing a permanent camper van facility to tackle seafront parking problems during future

Article source: http://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/local-news/porthcawl-caravan-park-reopen-after-3318166